6 Phases of Fuelling


Fuel is our lifeblood. Whether it is positive fuel from admiration, delight and love or negative fuel from hatred, anger or upset, we want fuel. There are many, many different ways in which we will manipulate you, many different machinations, some wonderful and others terrible, that we will use against you to extract fuel from you. These different methods appear during the six phases of fuelling.

  1. Seduction

A period when everything is rosy in the garden. We are the most wonderful person you could every meet. Kind, considerate, amusing and entertaining. We are generous with time or money, sometimes both. We are impressive in terms of our achievements, our abilities, the people that we know, the places that we have been and we just happen to like all the things that you like as well as we engage in our tried and trusted practice of mirroring. If we have chosen you to be our intimate partner we will gushing with love as we sweep you off your feet with borrowed love quotes, gifts and sensational love-making. It is irresistible and you will succumb to this intense love-bombing whether we want you as our partner in love, friend, trusted colleague or reliable family member. Our seduction is powerful, effective and is aimed at getting you hooked on us as we begin to drink from your positive fuel that you will provide to us during the golden period.

  1. Devaluation

In this second phase we have found your positive fuel has lost its potency. You are no longer providing us with the earnest and amazing admiration that we require and this is entirely your fault. The consequence of this is that we must continue to draw fuel in order to sustain our existence and now we must do this by extracting a contrasting fuel, negative fuel. This is derived by treating you badly, meting out silent treatments, shouting at you, provoking you and unleashing the whole malevolent content of our Devil’s Toolkit against you. We want you to shout insults at us in anger, we want you to plead with us to stop our torment of you, we want to see you sob in desperation at our continued abuse of you. Tears, frustration, anger and hatred are all delicious emotions which will fuel us and they provide such a magnificent and stark contrast to all of the positive fuel that you once gaze that the effect for us is considerably edifying and invigorating.

  1. Respite


We do not want to keep the devaluation in place all of the time otherwise you will break too soon and deprive us of our primary source of fuel. Accordingly, the third phase is one where we allow you some respite from the devaluation. We reinstate the golden period and you provide us with relief tinged positive fuel. This is of an excellent quality as it is heightened by your relief and joy at returning to the golden period. It also allows us to convince you that the golden period can be resurrected to you will not leave us and instead keep trying to recover it. We will alternate between devaluing you and offering you respite, back and forth between these two states in order to confuse you and keep you in situ. The contrast between treating you well and treating you badly also provides us with a greater degree of fuel as your emotions are pushed and pulled by us. This phase may last for years as we move you back and forth, one week everything is wonderful and then you are plunged into a fortnight of awful treatment with you completely bewildered as to why this is happening.

  1. Preventative

You may be pushed to a point of no return. You may have received some outside help from a friend or a professional who understands what is actually happening to you or it may be that you do not know what is happening but you know that you cannot allow it to continue any longer. In such a situation when you warn us that you are thinking of leaving us or that you intend to end our relationship we will instigate the preventative phase. This is designed to stop you from going. We will provide a massive dose of the golden period but we will also ally it with promises to mend our ways, seek help and change. None of it is meaningful but it is a desperate measure to prevent you from leaving us. We decide when we no longer want you, you are not superior to us and therefore you are not allowed, in our minds, to make this decision. By applying these preventative moves, which might be seeking pity, forgiveness, understanding and sympathy, we aim to stop your departure and then drink deep of the fuel that you will provide as you soothe away our concern, responding favourably to our stated intention to better ourselves. Your delight at hearing us say these things provides us with further fuel.

  1. Benign Return

Whether you escaped us or we cast you to one side through one of our callous discards we will also seek fuel through the benign return. Similar to the preventative stage but this takes place after there has been a cessation in our relationship. You try to stay away from us or you have been trying to get back with us but we have kept you at arms’ length for some time until we decide that we want your positive fuel once again and we approach you taking you back. We may seek forgiveness, express we made mistakes, that we were not thinking clearly and so on, all done in order to con you into resurrecting the relationship. If we ended it, you will return with joyful open arms. If you ended it, you will return delighted you have got us to agree to making changes. Of course nothing changes. It is all about the fuel and as you respond in a favourable manner, admiring us again, expressing your love and gratitude, portraying relief we will take all this fuel.

  1. Malign Return


This also takes place post cessation of the relationship. You may have ended it and resisted out attempts to hoover you back in. We may have ended it and you want to return to the fold but we will not let you as we have a replacement. In either instance we will not forgo the opportunity to extract additional fuel from you by continuing to administer terrible and hurtful manipulations against you. We may no longer be in a relationship but this will not stop us from lashing out, lying about you, invoking the assistance of others as we smear your name and doing everything we can on a repeated basis to cause you to become angry and upset and thus provide us with fuel. You may not have heard from us for some time but there will be some trigger, some opportunity and whilst we may not want you back or we may be unable to cause you to come back, we will still look to provoke and emotional reaction from you and obtain fuel. It is always about the fuel.

24 thoughts on “6 Phases of Fuelling

  1. J says:

    HG, I would value your views on the movie Mother! (movie). Personally, I believe it quite perfectly reflects the trauma of narc abuse, acquisition of fuel, and even some stages of the cycle. I would like to recommend it to people who are lucky enough not to have experienced Ns first-hand to better understand how dangerous they are and how their victims suffer. Would love to hear your thoughts first though. Many thanks for all your work!

    1. HG Tudor says:

      Hello J, you are welcome. I have not seen it yet, but when I do, I will give you my analysis (and not about the cinematography!).

    2. Peaceful says:

      J, you sparked my interest in this film. I’m going to see it this weekend. The trailer looks scary…. Can’t wait, and can’t wait to hear HG’s interpretation too!!!

  2. K says:

    You know what’s delicious HG? Revenge! I can’t wait to taste it!

    1. HG Tudor says:

      It tastes like victory.

  3. Lisa says:

    HG if a upper lesser to lower mid continues with occasional benign hoovers such as sending little pictures this is a few weeks after the grand Hoover failed . They may have other women/woman but are still feeling the need to do this , at some point they will give up Right ?
    I don’t think I’ve ever read that you say another grand Hoover will happen , there’s only one of those and if that fails they don’t keep doing those ?

    1. HG Tudor says:

      It all depends on the Hoover Trigger and the Hoover Execution Criteria.

  4. Tappan Zee says:

    Detonating the chance of 6. My fuel.

  5. Klm says:

    It’s been 1 year and 3 months since I left. I went through all the stages of grief..yes in my experience breaking up with a narc is the same as greiving a death. I’m also happy and content in my current relationship. What I want to know is will there ever be a day that goes by that I don’t think about him at least once? Right now it’s probably still at least 20 times a day…and he doesn’t deserve that which pisses me off.

    1. Lydia says:

      Same here Klm… I wish I could delete him just as easily as he has deleted me.

      1. windstorm2 says:

        All is not without hope. I can go days without thinking about mine. The key is to move on with your life and find new activities, projects, relationships to focus on. Now as to never thinking about him again? I’ve never achieved that one, but several days in a row? That’s definitely doable.

    2. 12345 says:

      In my experience, no, there will never be a day you don’t think about him. You can know intellectually that it is bad for you, but it doesn’t stop the whining about them.

      1. 12345 says:

        that was supposed to be thinking about them not whining about them.

      2. Insatiable Learner says:

        Hello 12345, I respectfully disagree. It is possible to stop thinking about them and go days or even weeks without a single thought of them crossing your mind. I’ve had two encounters with narcs. The first one rarely comes to mind. Even when he does, I feel nothing. No emotional charge. Just complete indifference. Working on getting there with the second one. Just wanted to share this to encourage you to have hope and persevere in your healing. Very best!

        1. Klm says:

          I can only hope that one day I can go days, weeks or months without thinking about him. I guess I’m just not there yet. Maybe it’s because we went from talking/texting daily to a very long silent treatment or maybe just maybe… it’s the lack of closure.

        2. 12345 says:

          I think it depends on your encounters. I have never experienced a single day without a narcissist in it. I’m definitely not hopeless. I’ve established so many healthy boundaries in the last eight months. I’ve persevered in healing for the last 34 of my 50 years. We’re all so different. I’m glad for you and your progress.

  6. windstorm2 says:

    I just got hovered today by my Moron in Munich (covert midranger). Think it may be #6. I always do the breaking away when he just gets on my nerves. Anymore that’s almost whenever I hear from him.

    Today he sent me an email that he really wanted to talk to me – any subject was fine. Then when I agreed, he made one comment then two hours of silence. When I then commented on his silence he gave me a list of all the things he had to do tonight – cook, eat, shower, listen to the radio (I kid you not- that was his list!) and how difficult it was for him to fit talking to me in his evening.

    Now I’m sitting here wondering if it’s deliberately malign or if he’s just that much of a loser. I’m contemplating sending an email, but he doesn’t deserve any fuel. Does this sound fuel free?

    “When a man contacts me and tells me that he wants to talk to me, I expect him to actually talk to me. If you just wanted to know if I am still alive or if I will respond to your email, then that is what you should have said.
    I actually would have enjoyed having a conversation with you, but I do not enjoy these infrequent short messages, then being ignored for long periods. If you don’t intend to talk to me, then just leave me alone, M.
    Talk or don’t talk, either one is fine. But do not insult me anymore by saying one thing, then doing another. All that does is show me how little you respect me.”

    Thank you, HG. Even if you don’t have time to answer it helps to talk about it. Midrangers are a waste of space! Thank you again for maintaining this blog!

  7. Jody Allen says:

    Can the relationship restart back to the Seduction period if the relationship has been on hiatus or does the Seduction period happen the one time and the Benign Return takes its place?
    Is the Benign Return for the Primary to become a Secondary/Tertiary source or is it also to bring a Primary source back to the position of Primary Source?
    Thank You

    1. HG Tudor says:

      Yes. If you are hoovered back into the Formal Relationship post escape or dis-enagagement then you are back into the seduction golden period as a consequence of a benign return. It invariably does not last as long as the initial golden period when you were first ensnared.

      The Benign Return for a former IPPS usually re-instates that person as the IPPS, but it is feasible for that person to enter a new FR as an IPSS or NISS.

  8. Peaceful says:

    Question HG, If after repeated discards, hoover, back in the relationship, respite, devalue, discard etc… after multitudes of this cycle, doesn’t the fuel eventually run out? Don’t you eventually suck us dry? Why keep this person hanging on? Like me? 5 years. And he’s still trying to hoover me back. Thank you!
    PS: I sent a dollop of PF this morning. No response. I’m guessing he’s thinking hmmmmm…. possibly can get her back? And now he’ll make me wait to hear from him. Also about 1/2 way through Sitting Target. It’s pissing me off 🙂 And now I see that rictus grin in like all the photos. Maybe you can write a post on that and raging eyes. I can just imagine the art piece to accompany. We’ll have even MORE nightmares!

    1. HG Tudor says:

      Possibly but any drying up of fuel is temporary, you recover your ability to provide fuel again, that is why we keep coming back.


  9. Miss Teri says:

    Short ‘Leash’ only ‘Requirement’. Please come to the ‘USA’. Love You Sir HG Tudor…

    1. Twilight says:

      Miss Teri
      Short leash?

    2. Twilight says:

      Miss Teri

      I believe I understand your “short” leash now

      Good luck with that

Vent Your Spleen! (Please see the Rules in Formal Info)

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.